Since the three "experts" (myself included) flopped so miserably on the first leg of the Triple Crown, the 137th Kentucky Derby, I felt it only fair for all of us to get a second chance at glory with the 136th running of the Preakness Stakes at Pimlico on Saturday. Again, I am joined by Martha Claussen and Dr. Reid McLellan, my two former co-handicappers at Houston. We will all be offering selections and analysis for the Preakness, and it's ladies first:
Martha Claussen's Preakness Analysis
Unlike someone I know, I will not jump on the Animal Kingdom bandwagon after completely disregarding him in the Derby. Nice run, but Super Saver won the Derby and finished eighth in the 2010 Preakness. Lots of interesting angles. Will Dialed In get some pace to run at so he can collect his $5.5 million bonus? Will Martin Garcia make the difference on Midnight Interlude and win back-to-back Preakness Stakes for Bob Baffert? What about the "new shooters" like Astrology, Sway Away, Flashpoint, and Dance City? Dance City intrigues me and will not get a lot of action. History says the Derby horses do best. I am throwing "history" and "dosage" into the swollen Mississippi River after seeing a horse win the Kentucky Derby in his dirt debut. So, I will take a few chances in my selections and go for a Pick 3 as I feel I can single Paddy O'Prado in the Grade 2 Dixie Stakes.
Martha's Top Four Selections: Dialed In, Dance City, Midnight Interlude, Astrology
Suggested Preakness Plays:
$14 WIN #10
$2 EX ALL with #10
$5 WPS #8
There are a few nice horses in the tenth race, the Grade 3 William Schaefer Memorial, so I will go five-deep. Graham Motion may win with Icabad Crane. I will single Paddy O'Prado in the Grade 2 Dixie and throw in some price picks in the Preakness.
$1 PICK THREE 2-3-5-7-8 with 4 with 1-4-5-6-7-8-9-10-11
TOTAL PREAKNESS PLAYS- $100
Reid McLellan's Preakness Analysis
#11 Animal Kingdom came from my "not fast enough" (NFE) category in the Derby, which meant I threw him out of even a superfecta possibility. His breeding was the only thing I liked about him, but I did not consider his non-dirt efforts good enough, even in this year's "evenly matched" group of three-year-olds. Now he gets a chance to "prove" that he is as good a dirt horse as any in this crop and he will get to do it without the burden of my money riding with him. Two horses that ran in the Kentucky Derby that came to Baltimore made impressive late moves along with "AK", #9 Mucho Macho Man and #10 Dialed In. It is interesting to note that only ONE of the fourteen entered had their final breeze at Pimlico (#2 Norman Asbjornson who is in my NFE group).#5 Shackleford doesn't have much competition for the lead all the way to the stretch unless the trainers of #4 Flashpoint (Wesley Ward) or #8 Dance City (Todd Pletcher) decide to challenge. Flashpoint trained super for Ward on the Polytrack at Keeneland, so I question his ability to stay the distance. I won't overlook the Steve Asmussen trained #1 Astrology either. That son of A.P. Indy has never been worse than third in seven starts and has three improving Beyer speed figures coming into this classic. Michael picked #7 Midnight Interlude in the Derby and he'll be sad if he doesn't pick him in the top three. Martha stayed with her buddy, Nick Zito, and I am going to stay with my sentimental horse "3M".
Reid's Top Four Selections- Mucho Macho Man, Dialed In, Shackleford, Astrology
Suggested Preakness Play
$20 WIN #9
10-cent Superfecta 5-9-10 with 1-4-5-9-10 with 1-4-5-9-10-11 with 1-3-4-5-6-7-8-9-10-11
TOTAL PREAKNESS PLAYS- $62